Publications & Products
Volume 3, Issue 30

Avoid Common Email Signature Mistakes

The signature at the bottom of an email is an often-overlooked opportunity for professionals to leave a positive and lasting impression, say communications experts.

Melissa Cassera and Ron Cates, personal branding and marketing specialists, recently spoke with Fast Company and shared some common mistakes that professionals should avoid when crafting their email signatures, such as:

  • Including too much contact information. Cassera says listing too much contact information comes across as desperate. She says professionals should list only one or two of the best ways to reach them. She also notes that including a physical address is rarely necessary in a signature.
  • Using an image as a signature. Cates says that some email providers and devices have default settings that block images in emails. He adds that if professionals want to use an image, they should always include alternate text so that the recipient won't see a blank box if the image is blocked. He notes, "There's nothing worse than an email with an unreadable signature."
  • Not designing a signature that can be easily viewed on a mobile device. "Make sure everything is ‘thumbable,'" Cates says. "The thumb is the new mouse. If the recipient can't easily put their thumb on your link, your email will get deleted... On a mobile device, reading speed is slower. Use san serif font with a point size of 11 to 14. Usability always takes precedence over design."
  • Including irrelevant or out-of-date information. "If I'm going to link to a blog post, for example, it should be current," says Cates. "Sending someone to a page that hasn't been updated in months could backfire. It sends the message that you're not serious."

This article is from the Feb. 3, 2014 issue.

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